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She Matters

She Matters

A Life in Friendships

by Susanna Sonnenberg

Hardcover, 255 pages, Simon & Schuster, $24, published January 8 2013 | purchase
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  • She Matters
  • A Life in Friendships
  • Susanna Sonnenberg

The best-selling author of Her Last Death presents an illuminating and provocative assessment of the women who have profoundly shaped her life, in a candid series of portraits that explores the powerful bonds and complex nuances that mark female friendships.

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The Lost Carving

The Lost Carving

A Journey to the Heart of Making

by David Esterly

Paperback, 279 pages, Penguin Group USA, $16, published December 31 2013 | purchase
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  • The Lost Carving
  • A Journey to the Heart of Making
  • David Esterly

David Esterly traces his path to becoming a forefront practitioner of Baroque artist Grinling Gibbons' forgotten woodcarving technique, including the year he spent re-creating a Gibbons piece that had been lost in a fire at the Hampton Court Palace outside London.

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The Great Agnostic

The Great Agnostic

Robert Ingersoll and American Freethought

by Susan Jacoby

Hardcover, 246 pages, Yale Univ Pr, $25, published January 8 2013 | purchase
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  • The Great Agnostic
  • Robert Ingersoll and American Freethought
  • Susan Jacoby

Restores America's foremost 19th-century champion of reason and secularism to our still contested 21st-century public square.

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How to Be a Woman

How To Be A Woman

by Caitlin Moran

Paperback, 320 pages, HarperCollins, $15.99, published July 17 2012 | purchase
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  • How To Be A Woman
  • Caitlin Moran

Piecing together common-sense observations with scenes from her own life, a major media personality in the U.K. sheds new light on feminism, discussing the reasons why female rights and empowerment are essential issues for both women and society itself.NPR Bestseller

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The Queen of Katwe

The Queen of Katwe

A Story of Life, Chess, and One Extraordinary Girl's Dream of Becoming a Grandmaster

by Tim Crothers

Hardcover, 232 pages, Simon & Schuster, $26, published October 9 2012 | purchase
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  • The Queen of Katwe
  • A Story of Life, Chess, and One Extraordinary Girl's Dream of Becoming a Grandmaster
  • Tim Crothers

Traces the story of an Ugandan teen who was introduced to chess by a missionary mentor and struggled to overcome formidable levels of poverty to become her country's national champion.

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The Ledge

The Ledge

An Adventure Story Of Friendship And Survival On Mount Rainier

by Jim Davidson and Kevin Vaughan

Paperback, 272 pages, Ballantine Books, $16, published January 1 2013 | purchase
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  • The Ledge
  • An Adventure Story Of Friendship And Survival On Mount Rainier
  • Jim Davidson and Kevin Vaughan

The Ledge documents the 1992 mountaineering venture during which co-author Jim Davidson and his best friend, Mike Price, ascended Mount Rainier before a tragic fall that instantly ended Mike's life and forced Jim to climb to safety with sparse equipment.

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Once Upon a Secret

Once Upon A Secret

My Affair With President John F. Kennedy And Its Aftermath

by Mimi Alford

Paperback, 213 pages, Random House Trade Paperbacks, $15, published January 1 2013 | purchase
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  • Once Upon A Secret
  • My Affair With President John F. Kennedy And Its Aftermath
  • Mimi Alford

A former mistress of the 35th president breaks 40 years of silence to present a memoir of their 18-month relationship, when she was a college intern at the White House, and discusses the effects of keeping silent on her later life.NPR Bestseller

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A Curious Man

A Curious Man

The Strange and Brilliant Life of Robert "Believe It or Not!" Ripley

by Neal Thompson

Hardcover, 320 pages, Random House, $26, published May 7 2013 | purchase
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  • A Curious Man
  • The Strange and Brilliant Life of Robert "Believe It or Not!" Ripley
  • Neal Thompson

Neal Thompson recounts the life of Robert Ripley, the enigmatic cartoonist-turned-globetrotting-millionaire who won international fame by celebrating the world's strangest oddities, and whose outrageous showmanship taught us to believe in the unbelievable.

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Dearie

Dearie

The Remarkable Life Of Julia Child

by Bob Spitz

Paperback, 557 pages, Random House Inc, $16, published April 23 2013 | purchase
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  • Dearie
  • The Remarkable Life Of Julia Child
  • Bob Spitz

Julia Child was a genuine rebel: She took the pretensions that embellished French cuisine and fricasseed them to a fare-thee-well, paving the way for a new era of American food — not to mention blazing a new trail in television. Bob Spitz reveals the history behind the woman who taught America how to cook.NPR Bestseller

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I'm Your Man

I'm Your Man

The Life Of Leonard Cohen

by Sylvie Simmons

Hardcover, 570 pages, Ecco, $27.99, published September 18 2012 | purchase
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  • I'm Your Man
  • The Life Of Leonard Cohen
  • Sylvie Simmons

An intimate portrait of one of the most important and influential songwriters of our time, I'm Your Man draws upon Leonard Cohen's private archives and a wealth of interviews with many of his closest associates, colleagues and other artists whose work he has inspired.NPR Bestseller

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Barack Obama

Barack Obama

The Story

by David Maraniss

Paperback, 641 pages, Simon & Schuster, $18, published January 15 2013 | purchase
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  • Barack Obama
  • The Story
  • David Maraniss

The Pulitzer Prize-winning author of They Marched Into Sunlight draws on hundreds of interviews and written sources to present a richly textured account of the 44th president and the forces that shaped his character and beliefs, tracing the experiences of family members before his birth through his entry into politics.NPR Bestseller

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A Difficult Woman

A Difficult Woman

The Challenging Life And Times Of Lillian Hellman

by Alice Kessler-Harris

Hardcover, 439 pages, Bloomsbury Press, $30, published April 24 2012 | purchase
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  • A Difficult Woman
  • The Challenging Life And Times Of Lillian Hellman
  • Alice Kessler-Harris

A provocative assessment of the controversial playwright challenges the opinions of her detractors while exploring contradictions in her character, from her non-practice of Judaism and her impassioned but nonpartisan political views to her sexual freedom in spite of a scorn for the women's movement and her writing of memoirs that repeatedly questioned the authenticity of memory.

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The Black Count

The Black Count

Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, And The Real Count Of Monte Cristo

by Tom Reiss

Paperback, 432 pages, Random House Inc, $16, published May 14 2013 | purchase
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  • The Black Count
  • Glory, Revolution, Betrayal, And The Real Count Of Monte Cristo
  • Tom Reiss

Gen. Thomas-Alexandre Dumas was one of the heroes of the French Revolution, leading armies of thousands in triumph through the snows of the Alps and the sands of Egypt. Today, he is almost forgotten, though he lives on in his son's stories. The son of a Haitian slave and a French nobleman, this mixed-race swordsman was the father of novelist Alexandre Dumas, and his adventures helped inspire The Count of Monte Cristo and The Three Musketeers. Tom Reiss' biography of the elder Dumas explores the real-life adventures behind these classic novels.NPR Bestseller

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Wild

Wild

From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail

by Cheryl Strayed

Paperback, 315 pages, Random House Inc, $15.95, published March 26 2013 | purchase
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  • Wild
  • From Lost to Found on the Pacific Crest Trail
  • Cheryl Strayed

At 22, Cheryl Strayed thought she had lost everything. In the wake of her mother's death, her family scattered and her own marriage was soon destroyed. Four years later, with nothing more to lose, she made the most impulsive decision of her life. With no experience or training, driven only by blind will, she would hike more than 1,000 miles of the Pacific Crest Trail, from the Mojave Desert through California and Oregon to Washington state — and she would do it alone.NPR Bestseller

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Waging Heavy Peace

Waging Heavy Peace

A Hippie Dream

by Neil Young

Paperback, 502 pages, Penguin Group USA, $18, published July 30 2013 | purchase
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  • Waging Heavy Peace
  • A Hippie Dream
  • Neil Young

Neil Young presents the story of his career against a backdrop of 40 years of history. He discusses such topics as his collaborations with fellow artists, his creative process and his activist work with Farm Aid and The Bridge School.NPR Bestseller

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The Patriarch

The Patriarch

The Remarkable Life and Turbulent Times of Joseph P. Kennedy

by David Nasaw

Hardcover, 868 pages, Penguin Group USA, $40, published November 13 2012 | purchase
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  • The Patriarch
  • The Remarkable Life and Turbulent Times of Joseph P. Kennedy
  • David Nasaw

Historian David Nasaw draws on exclusive records to offer insight into Joseph P. Kennedy's shrewd financial talents and considerable ambition for his family, providing coverage of such topics as the controversies surrounding his character and his role in several mainstream political events.NPR Bestseller

News and Reviews
Wherever I Wind Up

Wherever I Wind Up

My Quest for Truth, Authenticity, and the Perfect Knuckleball

by R. A. Dickey and Wayne Coffey

Hardcover, 340 pages, Penguin Group USA, $26.95, published March 29 2012 | purchase
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  • Wherever I Wind Up
  • My Quest for Truth, Authenticity, and the Perfect Knuckleball
  • R. A. Dickey and Wayne Coffey

Relates the author's unlikely journey to the big leagues after his athletic dream was nearly destroyed and how he was sustained by his Christian faith and the love of his family before emerging as one of the National League's premier pitchers.

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As Consciousness Is Harnessed to Flesh

As Consciousness Is Harnessed to Flesh

Journals and Notebooks, 1964-1980

by Susan Sontag and David Rieff

Paperback, 523 pages, St Martins Pr, $20, published July 30 2013 | purchase
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  • As Consciousness Is Harnessed to Flesh
  • Journals and Notebooks, 1964-1980
  • Susan Sontag and David Rieff

A second volume of Susan Sontag's journals shares intimate reflections on the writer's artistic and political development during a trip to Hanoi at the peak of the Vietnam War and throughout her filmmaking years in Sweden.

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All We Know

All We Know

Three Lives

by Lisa Cohen

Hardcover, 429 pages, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $30, published July 17 2012 | purchase
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  • All We Know
  • Three Lives
  • Lisa Cohen

Lisa Cohen chronicles the lives of New York intellectual Esther Murphy, celebrity ephemera collector Mercedes de Acosta and British Vogue editor Madge Garland as well as their lifestyles, influence on fashion and celebrity friendships.

News and Reviews
Blue-Eyed Devil

Blue-Eyed Devil

A Road Odyssey Through Islamic America

by Michael Muhammad Knight

Paperback, 214 pages, A K Pr Distribution, $16.95, published January 1 2007 | purchase
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  • Blue-Eyed Devil
  • A Road Odyssey Through Islamic America
  • Michael Muhammad Knight
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Where the Heart Beats

Where The Heart Beats

John Cage, Zen Buddhism, And The Inner Life Of Artists

by Kay Larson

Hardcover, 474 pages, Penguin Group USA, $29.95, published July 5 2012 | purchase
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  • Where The Heart Beats
  • John Cage, Zen Buddhism, And The Inner Life Of Artists
  • Kay Larson

Assesses the influence of Zen Buddhism on the work of composer John Cage, exploring the ways in which Zen transformed Cage's troubled psyche, his relationship with partner Merce Cunningham, and his often indefinable music.

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No Regrets

No Regrets

Writings On Scott Walker

by Rob Young

Hardcover, 320 pages, Orion, $29.95, published August 7 2012 | purchase
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  • No Regrets
  • Writings On Scott Walker
  • Rob Young

Scott Walker has travelled from teen idol to the outer limits of music. From 'The Sun Ain't Gonna Shine Any More' reaching no.1 through to recordings of meat being punched on his last album, The Drift, he somehow seems to have reached a passionate and committed fan base, and his impeccable critical reputation as a serious and uncompromising musician has never been under question. The recent film, 30th Century Man, had a litany of stars queuing up to praise Walker: the likes of David Bowie, Damon Albarn, Jarvis Cocker, Radiohead, Johnny Marr and Sting. But despite this, in forty years of music, there has yet to be a serious book on Scott Walker. This collection put together by Rob Young of The Wire magazine features a handful of previously published articles and newly commissioned pieces, largely drawn from the orbit of The Wire's writers including Ian Penman, Chris Bohn and Rob Young.

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Life Is a Gift

Life Is A Gift

The Zen Of Bennett

by Tony Bennett and Mitch Albom

Hardcover, 250 pages, Harper, $28.99, published November 20 2012 | purchase
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  • Life Is A Gift
  • The Zen Of Bennett
  • Tony Bennett and Mitch Albom

The entertainment icon presents an array of stories that capture humorous and inspirational moments from his sixty-year career. He shares the wisdom he has gained from his own experiences and from the people he met along the way.

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The One

The One

The Life And Music Of James Brown

by R. J. Smith

Hardcover, 455 pages, Gotham, $27.50, published March 15 2012 | purchase
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  • The One
  • The Life And Music Of James Brown
  • R. J. Smith

A tribute to the life and achievements of the "Godfather of Soul" draws on interviews with more than 100 people who knew him personally or played with him professionally, providing coverage of such topics as his unconventional youth in a segregated South, his complicated family life and his work as a Civil Rights advocate and entrepreneur.

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Rod

Rod

The Autobiography

by Rod Stewart

Hardcover, 394 pages, Crown Archetype, $27, published October 23 2012 | purchase
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  • Rod
  • The Autobiography
  • Rod Stewart

A personal portrait by the legendary singer recounts his life on and off the stage, from his humble British roots and riotous years on tour, to his three marriages and decades as a solo performer.

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The Brontes cover.

The Brontes

Wild Genius On The Moors: The Story Of A Literary Family

by Juliet Barker

Hardcover, 1158 pages, Pegasus, $39.95, published August 1 2012 | purchase
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  • The Brontes
  • Wild Genius On The Moors: The Story Of A Literary Family
  • Juliet Barker

A history of the Bronte family is based on years of research and correspondence by each family member, challenging traditionally accepted portraits of the patriarchal Patrick and revealing Charlotte's ruthless nature, in a revised edition that incorporates the newest research.

News and Reviews
Marmee & Louisa

Marmee & Louisa

The Untold Story Of Louisa May Alcott And Her Mother

by Eve Laplante

Paperback, 368 pages, Simon & Schuster, $16, published November 19 2013 | purchase
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  • Marmee & Louisa
  • The Untold Story Of Louisa May Alcott And Her Mother
  • Eve Laplante

In this dual biography, uncovered family papers allow Eve LaPlante to revise the common conceptions of Louisa May Alcott's home life. Most biographers focus on Alcott's relationship with her father, but as it turns out, the author of Little Women had a deeply influential relationship with her hardworking mother. Abigail May Alcott served as the intellectual and emotional center of Louisa's life, acting as a moral beacon on issues like social reform and gender inequality. When Louisa began writing her classic novel, it was to her mother's diaries that she first turned.

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Elsewhere

Elsewhere

A Memoir

by Richard Russo

Paperback, 246 pages, Random House Inc, $15, published July 30 2013 | purchase
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  • Elsewhere
  • A Memoir
  • Richard Russo

Richard Russo delivers an upbeat, personal account of his youth and the 1950s upstate New York town his family struggled to escape. He recounts the encroaching poverty and illness that challenged everyday life and the dreams his mother instilled that inspired his career.NPR Bestseller

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My Husband and My Wives

My Husband And My Wives

A Gay Man's Odyssey

by Charles Rowan Beye

Hardcover, 256 pages, Farrar, Straus & Giroux, $26, published October 2 2012 | purchase
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  • My Husband And My Wives
  • A Gay Man's Odyssey
  • Charles Rowan Beye

My Husband and My Wives: A Gay's Man's Odyssey is Charles Rowan Beye's memoir of a man reflecting on eight tumultuous decades at the complications of discovering at puberty that he is attracted to other men.

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